Swedish Special Operations Forces: How It All Started

  • Colonel Hans Ilis Alm
Part of the New Security Challenges book series (NSECH)


The second chapter, Swedish Special Operations Forces: How It All Started, presents the history of SWESOF. The author displays constraints and possibilities that affect the development of a complex military capability in a small state. Further, the chapter entails a discussion of why, relatively speaking, it took so long for Sweden to develop an instrument for special operations and what consequences followed. The author also describes the challenge of balancing between staying small and innovative or expanding and the risk of gradually becoming conventional similar to the rest of the Armed Forces. Where is the tipping point, where for financial reasons you no longer are lean enough to be equipped with state-of-the-art equipment and thereby maintain the edge? The gap between the Special Forces, the tip of the spear, and the conventional forces will inevitably become narrower.


Special Operation Special Force Political Trust Defense Policy Military Leadership 
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© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Colonel Hans Ilis Alm
    • 1
  1. 1.

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